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U.S. State Department official resigns in protest of Biden admin’s “blind support” for Israel

Josh Paul

In its report titled “State Department Official Resigns Over Arms Transfers to Israel,” The New York Times on Oct. 19, 2023 carried this photo of Josh Paul provided by Paul himself. Paul worked in the bureau that oversees U.S. arms transfer to foreign nations and resigned in protest of the Joe Biden administration’s “blind support” for Israel in its ongoing conflict with Hamas. (Credit: Josh Paul)

“I cannot work in support of a set of major policy decisions, including rushing more arms to one side of the conflict, that I believe to be shortsighted, destructive, unjust and contradictory to the very values we publicly espouse,” writes Josh Paul.

WASHINGTON, Oct. 19 (Xinhua) — A U.S. State Department official working in the bureau that oversees U.S. arms transfer to foreign nations has resigned in protest of the Joe Biden administration’s “blind support” for Israel in its ongoing conflict with Hamas.

Josh Paul, who has worked in the department’s Bureau of Political-Military Affairs for more than 11 years, said in his resignation letter dated Wednesday that he decided to leave because he couldn’t agree with his country’s “continued – indeed, expanded and expedited – provision of lethal arms to Israel.”

Paul said while he wanted to make his opinion clear to all that Hamas’ attack on Israel “was a monstrosity of monstrosities,” he also believed that “the response Israel is taking, and with it the American support both for that response, and for the status quo of the occupation, will only lead to more and deeper suffering for both the Israeli and the Palestinian people.”

“This Administration’s response – and much of Congress’ as well – is an impulsive reaction built on confirmation bias, political convenience, intellectual bankruptcy, and bureaucratic inertia. That is to say, it is immensely disappointing, and entirely unsurprising,” he wrote.

“The fact is, blind support for one side is destructive in the long term to the interests of the people on both sides,” he continued. “I fear we are repeating the same mistakes we have made these past decades, and I decline to be a part of it for longer.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (right) meets with U.S. President Joe Biden in Tel Aviv, Israel, on Oct. 18, 2023. (Miriam Alster/JINI via Xinhua)

“I cannot work in support of a set of major policy decisions, including rushing more arms to one side of the conflict, that I believe to be shortsighted, destructive, unjust and contradictory to the very values we publicly espouse,” Paul wrote.

The State Department declined to comment on Paul’s resignation, according to multiple U.S. media reports, telling those seeking a response that the agency would not discuss personnel matters.

Since the start of the current conflict, the Biden administration has been repeating its stance that Israel has not only the right, but also the obligation to defend itself and protect its people.

The administration has promised full support for Israel, vowing to provide whatever the country needs to prosecute the war against Hamas. It has sent two carrier strike groups to waters near Israel as a deterrence and put some 2,000 troops on high alert for deployment – possibly into Israeli territory.

Biden is scheduled to address the nation in a televised speech from the White House during prime time on Thursday evening, using the occasion to sell to the American people his approach to conflicts in Israel and Ukraine.

During the much-anticipated speech, the president is expected to announce his administration’s request for Congress to pass a supplement spending bill that will provide 10 billion U.S. dollars in emergency assistance for Israel and 60 billion dollars for Ukraine’s conflict with Russia, according to media reports citing people familiar with the decision.

Xinhua

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